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Blackhawks F Bollig excited to play in Stanley Cup

Thursday - 6/13/2013, 2:04am  ET

Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford (50) celebrates with defenseman Nick Leddy (8) during the third overtime period of Game 1 in their NHL Stanley Cup Final hockey series, Thursday, June 13, 2013, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

JAY COHEN
AP Sports Writer

CHICAGO (AP) -- The Chicago Blackhawks certainly enjoyed their triple-overtime, 4-3 win in Game 1 over the Boston Bruins.

Now they want to rest up. Game 2 is Saturday night, after all. After his game-winner late in the third overtime, Andrew Shaw was asked how to refocus on the next game.

"Get some sleep," he said.

"Emotions are high, but too exhausted right now to express it," he added. "Guys are just glad the game ended."

Chicago coach Joel Quenneville knows his team needs a breather, too.

"We've got a couple of days here," he said. "Get some rest, because we basically just played two games in one night here. But based on how it went tonight, we'll have to be ready."

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BOLLIG'S BACK: Brandon Bollig played in three games in the Chicago Blackhawks' first-round series against Minnesota, and that was it for a while.

He practiced and tried to stay ready while Chicago eliminated Detroit and turned away Los Angeles in the Western Conference finals.

Now the Blackhawks are in the Stanley Cup finals, and Bollig is back as well with the Bruins in town for the first two games.

"Sitting out a good stretch of games there in the playoffs is never easy, but it kind of comes with the territory of my role," Bollig said, "and I couldn't be more excited to get going. It's kind of something you dream of as a kid to play in the Stanley Cup final and I'm pretty pumped to live that dream."

With Bollig in the Game 1 lineup for the first time since May 5, Viktor Stalberg was out. Stalberg had no goals and three assists in 15 playoff games.

"I can't really get too down or too upset or too frustrated about it," Stalberg said before the Blackhawks 4-3 triple-overtime win in Game 1. "There's two weeks left in the year. I'm going to try to win it. It's as simple as that. I think if I'm playing, I'm playing; if I'm not, I'm not. You can't do much about that right now.

"Even when I was playing, it felt like I wasn't playing at times. It's what it is, obviously frustrating. But at the end of the day, it's two more weeks and hopefully have a Cup here. That's all that matters."

Stalberg is eligible for free agency after the season and was noncommittal when asked about re-signing with Chicago.

"We'll see what happens," he said.

Bollig puts a more physical presence in the lineup, but he has one career goal in 50 games in the NHL. His only point came when he scored against Phoenix in last year's playoffs.

"Obviously, they're a big, rough tough team," he said of the Bruins. "They play physical and I'm looking to maybe counter that with my game and provide that physical presence and maybe that safety for some of our more skilled guys to go out there and play their game."

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KRUG'S CONTRIBUTION: It was only a few weeks ago that Torrey Krug was an unknown minor leaguer. Now, he has the NHL buzzing.

The 22-year-old defenseman has come up big for the Bruins in the playoffs and has a chance to hoist the Stanley Cup, a rocket-like rise for an undrafted player who appeared in just one regular-season game.

"There are guys who obviously haven't made it to a Cup finals through their whole careers," Krug said.

Yet here he is, making big contributions for a team eyeing its second championship in three years. He ranks third among defensemen in the playoffs with four goals and has six points in just nine postseason games.

Not bad, particularly given that his only appearance during the regular season was against Montreal on March 27. For what it's worth, he had an assist in that game.

Signed in March 2012 after going undrafted out of Michigan State, Krug spent most of the season at Providence of the AHL and emerged as a key contributor for Boston's top minor league affiliate. He had 13 goals and 32 assists in 63 regular-season games while leading Providence to the best record in the AHL. Then, he contributed three assists in seven playoff games before being called up last month.

"I was pretty focused on our playoffs in Providence," Krug said. "I was focused on the job we had to do there. For me, I really wasn't thinking about (the Stanley Cup)."

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EMERY READY: Ray Emery teamed with Corey Crawford to form one of the best goalie tandems in the league this year for the Blackhawks.

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